New Kingdom, Dynasty 18–20
1550–1070 B.C.

Accession Number


Medium or Technique


Not On View


The Ancient World


Shawabties and shawabty boxes

Shawabty of wood with substantial bitumen coating over most surfaces, now worn somewhat smooth in some areas and down to wood in others. Characteristically mummiform figure; wears a tripartite wig; arms crossed over chest as though bundled under wrappings with some modeling of hands. Unclear if the shawabty was originally shown holding implements in hands or addorned with painted decoration and/or applied text.


By 1836: Robert Hay Collection, Linplum, Scotland; 1863: to his son, Robert James Alexander Hay; 1868-1872: Way Collection, Boston (purchased by Samuel A. Way through London dealers Rollin and Feuardent, 27 Haymarket); 1872: given to the MFA by Samuel's son, C. Granville Way.
(Accession Date: June 28, 1872)

Credit Line

Hay Collection—Gift of C. Granville Way